Question for written answer E-010831/2015
to the Commission
Jonathan Arnott (EFDD)
Subject: EU-Zimbabwe relations
Recently the EU has pledged aid to Zimbabwe to the sum of USD 270 million to support agriculture and health improvements, alongside the lifting of the sanctions and travel bans that had been imposed on many senior government officials, excepting Robert Mugabe and his wife.
In light of the calls from Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister, Patrick Chinamasa, for the ‘unconditional lifting of sanctions against our Head of State and First Lady’, are there any ongoing negotiations on the possibility of such a ban being lifted so as to allow Robert Mugabe and his wife to travel to Europe and unfreeze his assets on Europe’s mainland?
Answer given by Vice-President Mogherini
on behalf of the Commission
Responding to the Global Political Agreement and the Government of National Unity, the EU has taken steps, since 2009, towards gradually normalising relations with Zimbabwe.
On 1 November 2014, the Council decided to let the appropriate measures taken under Article 96 of the EU ACP Partnership Agreement expire, enabling the resumption of multi-year cooperation with Zimbabwe under the 11 EDF, worth € 234 million for the period up to 2020.
Restrictive measures against 84 individuals and 8 entities have been suspended but not lifted, and still apply to President Mugabe and his wife Grace, and to Zimbabwe Defence Industries. On 20 February 2015, the Council decided to roll-over the remaining restrictive measures against Zimbabwe under the Union’s Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), emphasising the need for continued political reform, while it continues monitoring closely the situation of human rights. The Council will keep these measures under constant review in view of the latest developments in Zimbabwe.